Diana Kennedy or Rick Bayless?

I want to give a dear friend a cookbook for her birthday. She's traveled extensively in Mexico and pines for its foods. She is an accomplished cook but has no cookbook with authentic recipes. Which should I give her? Feel free to make other suggestions!

  • 4175 views
  • 10 Comments

10 Comments

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
dymnyno
dymnyno May 4, 2013

I like them both and have a lot of books from both authors. Diana Kennedy's OAXACA AL GUSTO is gorgeous. The photography is stunning.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
Kristen W.
Kristen W. May 4, 2013

I don't have any of Diana Kennedy's books but I do have some of Rick Bayless's, and I love, love, love them. His recipes -- even the simpler ones -- without fail produce incredible depth of flavor.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
Stephanie G
Stephanie G May 4, 2013

Personally, i'm really enjoying Gran Cocina Latina, by Maricel Presilla. I probably didn't spell her name right.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments

Voted the Best Reply!

mrslarkin
mrslarkin May 4, 2013

Either! They are equally awesome.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
boulangere
boulangere May 4, 2013

If she knows Mexico and its regional cuisines well, I'd go with Diana Kennedy. Information she has gleaned from natives and locals is priceless.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
healthierkitchen
healthierkitchen May 4, 2013

Not to complicate things further, but I got Truly Mexican by Roberto Santibanez last year after reading about it here in the Piglet and I've loved what I've tried so far. I also really like Pati Jinich's new book.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
pierino
pierino May 4, 2013

For a couple of gabachos Kennedy and Bayless are great on their research and the authenticity. They've plunged into the different regions of Mexico and brought back the real thing. Mexican food this side of the border is equally regional depending on whether you are in Texas, New Mexico or Southern California. Just for reading purposes (no recipes) check out TACO USA by my compadre and home boy Gustavo Arellano. The level of research and scholarship that went into writing about tacos and burritos is absolutely incredible. And he's really funny too.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
Nancy Harmon Jenkins

Why not give her both? They are both excellent, both in terms of their understanding of Mexican cuisines and in their ability to convey information to the non-expert reader. Both cookbooks and a package of some super-wonderful dried chili peppers as a decoration on the outside of your gift wrapping.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
Nancy Harmon Jenkins

Why not give her both? They are both excellent, both in terms of their understanding of Mexican cuisines and in their ability to convey information to the non-expert reader. Both cookbooks and a package of some super-wonderful dried chili peppers as a decoration on the outside of your gift wrapping.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
paseo
paseo May 5, 2013

I am with Nancy - be a great friend and give her both. Bayless is great for usability (some of us live in a US Mexican food wasteland) and DIana Kennedy is hard to beat for authenticity but can be dogmatic (in a good way). AndI think they complement each other well.

Review our Code of Conduct
Don't send me emails about new comments
Showing 10 out of 10 Comments Back to top
Recommended by Food52